From Council Member Linea Palmisano
The first two months of the new term have been very active for our 13th Ward City Council Office. This term, I chair three committees: the Internal Audit Committee, the Enterprise Committee, and the Budget Committee. My goal is to be a watchdog of the way the city functions and spends our resources. With a large turnover recently in City leadership, this will be an important gap to fill in our city moving forward.
One of the big issues our Audit Committee has been working on the last few years relates to police body-worn cameras. I am using every tool available to get our police department to fully utilize their body cameras. This comes in the wake of the shooting of Justine Damond last summer and an audit I spearheaded last fall showing that officers were failing to turn on their body cameras nearly 30% of the time. I am frustrated that this issue has required my ongoing pressure to get fixed, but I am confident we have turned the page, and the new police leadership will soon be implementing updated body camera policies.
My office recently put together a town hall conversation with new Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo and 5th Precinct Inspector Kathy Waite. We discussed the body camera issue, police use of force and fostering closer relationships between the police and the community. I think it was a positive conversation. I hope both the community and our police leadership were able to learn things from one another.
My office also convened a Palmisano Presents conversation recently on pedestrian safety in conjunction with the Armatage Neighborhood Association; this after a walker was recently killed at 54th and Penn. At the forum, we discussed pedestrian safety issues and city officials explained our Vision Zero initiative, which aims to completely eliminate pedestrian deaths in our city.
Finally, I’d like to ask folks to pay attention and get involved as our city begins the process of updating our comprehensive plan. One of the concepts being discussed relates to how we allow multi-family dwellings in what are today areas zoned for single family homes. Please stay tuned for more information as we move ahead with this process. We will finalize the updated comprehensive plan later this year.
As always, please feel free to contact our office with any comments or questions. It is my pleasure serving you on the City Council, and I thoroughly enjoy hearing from you.
To contact Council Member Palmisano, please visit www.minneapolismn.gov/ward13 or call 612-673-2213.